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Portrait of an American Divorce

I was married by a judge. I should have asked for a jury.
As little girls most women dreamed of the perfect wedding, the perfect husband and the perfect marriage, yet, in recent history this dream has been shattered for many. One common statistic is that out of ten American marriages five divorce and two remain unhappy.As divorce is difficult for childless women, women with children have a much more precarious position. When women are left to a slight disadvantage with divorce, not only to deal with the emotional loss of a marriage, yet also the financial and legal difficulties. Women are more often then not caught in a trap created by gender expectations, making it more difficult to readjust their already difficult divorce.
When marriages do not work out there is one of only two solutions, to stay together for the sake of the children or to divorce for the sake of themselves.Many are fearful of divorce, concerned that it may emotionally damage their child.These worries are unfounded. While single parent households hold the stigma of unbalanced and unhealthy living environments the case is generally not so. Many households with single mothers who are the wage earners have been found to have a healthier family life and produced better adjusted children then unbroken homes (Kessler, 1975). Also, a sizable study by Louise Despert concluded that children in homes with much conflict suffer more then children from broken homes. Yet studies have shown that children living in happy "broken homes" are better off then children who live in unhappy homes where the parents are still married (Taves, 1968)).
Studies have shown that the emotional loss of a spouse due to divorce is similar to the loss of a deceased spouse. In the time immediately following a divorce a person's emotions set in a stage of flux. While euphoric and positive of the split at some points individuals also become depressed and their self-image dr…

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